Wild West Film Fest

Hollywood Hawks is excited to be teaming up with The Wild West Film Festival this October! For those of you who don’t know, The Wild West Film Festival is a unique 48-hour film competition. The festival, which celebrates its eighth anniversary in Lawrence this year, gives teams of filmmakers secret criteria and only 48 hours to make a short horror-themed film. It is an intense, two-day marathon of creativity and teamwork – an incredibly fun, exhausting and extremely fulfilling experience for everyone involved.

And this year, the festival gets a little bigger. Hollywood Hawks will be hosting its own L.A.-based festival and screening!  The festival has become a huge part of the local Lawrence community. And we hope to do the same in L.A.

Not only does it provide filmmakers an opportunity to challenge themselves, but proceeds go to support charities. In the past, the festival has raised money for The Willow Domestic Violence Center, The Lawrence Humane Society, and The Social Service League. In 2010, the festival was awarded the Loren Dolezal Community Service Award from the KU Department of Film and Media Studies for outstanding work within the film and local community. This year, the festival will share some of its proceeds with the Hollywood Hawks Career Orientation Program.

Teams can sign up right here, right now!!  Just register with your email address below:

Team Location
Team Captain Email Address


After signing up online, teams will receive an email within 24 hours with more information regarding the festival. Friday night, October 19th between 7-8pm (pacific time) teams will receive an email with the secret criteria that all films must follow. This is to ensure the films are shot during the 48-hour period. The criteria also push team creatively by adding themes, objects and sometimes even lines of dialogue filmmakers must incorporate in the films. You never know what the criteria is or how it will affect your film. One infamous year the criteria was “No Blood, No Guns, No Violence” and, needless to say, this forced many teams to rethink how they could scare the audience. After getting the email, teams have 48 hours to write, shoot and edit their film. Sunday night teams can upload their film and send them to our email address.

The following week, a panel of judges will review and award the top three films. Prizes include $100 dollars cash, gift certificates, and more!

The top 25+ films will be screened Sunday, October 28th at Liberty Hall in Lawrence and a location TBD in Los Angeles.

I hope this has helped explain the festival a little better. But really, you won’t understand this beast until you do it. The challenge of the 48-hour limit is unlike any other. Check out the youtube page to get an idea of the diversity of teams the festival gathers. From high school and college students, veterans and first timers, professionals and families…anyone can do it. The festival is open to anybody with a camera and a love of filmmaking!

Please check out the Wild West Film Fest’s YouTube page to view past films by clicking here.

If you have any questions, please contact us:

If you live in Los Angeles and would like to either put a team together or be on a team, please contact our film festivals committee at filmfestivals@hollywoodhawks.com. If you are interested in being an actor on one of our teams, please email our casting coordinator at casting@hollywoodhawks.com.



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